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Thread: Where is the Worst Traffic in the World?

  1. #1
    Cyburbian circusoflife's avatar
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    Where is the Worst Traffic in the World?

    Any votes on what city has the WORST TRAFFIC IN THE WORLD.

    I always see the top 10 for the US, but have never seen one for the world.

    I guess my definition would be not only length of time to go a certain a distance, but also including pollution, noise, etc...


    I am in Bangkok right now - leaving after 3 months (Granted I was only in the city for 1/2 of that time) in a couple of days back to the US. Here is one person's take on traffic in Bangkok.

    http://www.geocities.com/gone_to_mex...c/traffic.html

    It is dated since the new subway is open now, and the skytrain (1999) has been operating for awhile. I believe both of these have significantly improved the flow, so that only peak hours tend to be most agitating.

    Based on my travels I would have to say then either Jakarta, Indonesia, Los Angeles, CA, or Houston, Texas at the moment. Bangalore, India also comes to mind. I guess there are a slew of cities I have visited in the last couple of years that could take the crown, though for different reasons. (More loud annoying motorcycles in Asia being one reason).

    Votes?

    New Yorker - Bumper to Bumper - mentions Lagos, Nigeria

    http://worldcarfree.net/dhaka/ - I forgot to mention Chennai, India traffic. But, reading this article, I suppose Bangladesh gets a vote though I've never been.

    But the winner might be in China. Beijing is pretty bad...but it sounds as if some of the other major cities in China might qualify. Even though it is a 10-dayer, I guess the rule is consistent traffic jam.

    10 day traffic jam!!
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/china/stor...287032,00.html

    ---
    Reference:

    Ranking of traffic in USA

    http://www.bicyclecommuter.com/AmericanGridlock.htm

    I just used Google's image search and typed in LAGOS TRAFFIC.

    here is what I found:

    http://allafrica.com/photoessay/hawkers/

    http://realnigeria.org/photos3.asp

    http://www.dw-world.de/dw/detail/1,1581,1271050,00.html

    typing in DHAKA TRAFFIC comes up with some interesting images.

    http://images.google.co.th/images?q=...=Search+Images

    Scary

    Let's face it...there are plenty of societies (Rich and poor) who haven't adapted to technology and growing populations in the 20th century very well.

    The total number of vehicles (such as cars,buses,and trucks)
    in Indonesia increased from over 12 million in 1995 to over 19
    million in 2000 (see Fig.1)-motorcycles1 (which comprise 71
    percent of the total vehicle fleet)alone accounted for 5 million
    of this increase.Transportation consumes 12 million kiloliters
    of gas oil,12 million kiloliters of premium,118 thousand
    kiloliters of diesel oil,185 thousand kiloliters of fuel oil,and
    749 thousand kiloliters of other types of fuel.
    2
    Source: Statistik Lingkungan Hidup Indonesia, 2000.

    ---

    19 million in 2000, so 1.4 million added per year? So at that rate or something close to it 25- 28 million now?? 18-19 million motorcycles now I'm guessing if the same 70% factor is applied. I think this might make Indonesia the #1 in total motorcycle ownership by country......though still far behind Taiwan's per capita ownership.

    I can vouch for how annoying all the motorcycles are. I was on Java in late 2003. It was crazy even outside Jakarta.

    Curious why there have been no responses to this thread - of either places, or of shock and disgust/amazement, etc.........are we desensitized? Is this old news?
    Last edited by NHPlanner; 11 May 2005 at 9:33 AM.

  2. #2

    Rio de Janiero

    Traffic on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon between some neighborhoods and the beach is unbelievable. 1-2 hours in the car is expected for a few miles. Part of the ride may be in tunnels and the air becomes pretty unbearable.
    Using a combo of walking and taking the bus is preferable!

  3. #3
    Cyburbian el Guapo's avatar
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    Well, I haven't been everywhere. But the traffic in Calcutta was lively.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails reducedindiaphoto1.jpg  

  4. #4
    Cyburbian spunky2's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by circusoflife
    19 million in 2000, so 1.4 million added per year? So at that rate or something close to it 25- 28 million now?? 18-19 million motorcycles now I'm guessing if the same 70% factor is applied. I think this might make Indonesia the #1 in total motorcycle ownership by country......though still far behind Taiwan's per capita ownership.
    Are we talking about worst traffic or worst traffic laws (or lack thereof)? Traffic in Taipei is nuts but it moves.

    Do they allow motorcycles over 250 cc in Indonesia? They do not in Taipei which is sort of helpful but not too comforting when a 125 cc scooter is coming towards you while you are walking on the sidewalk.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian circusoflife's avatar
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    As for Calcutta - closest I've been is Varanasi, India and Nepal. I did see plenty of aerial shots of Calcutta on CBS' Amazing Race (5 or 6). That brought back enough memories of a few cities in India (Namely Chennai) to make me realize I never want to go to Calcutta.

    Nice photo. Helmets? Who needs that. Protective gear...that is for sissies. I always find it funny that the children have no head gear and the adults do...

    I've heard Chennai and Calcutta are the two hardest cities in India. Which would make them among the hardest in the world I reckon. (The pictures of Dhaka and Lagos look quite scary to me..needless to say those cities are near the absolute bottom of my visit list - or actually...not even on the list!)

    Quote Originally posted by spunky2
    Are we talking about worst traffic or worst traffic laws (or lack thereof)? Traffic in Taipei is nuts but it moves.

    Do they allow motorcycles over 250 cc in Indonesia? They do not in Taipei which is sort of helpful but not too comforting when a 125 cc scooter is coming towards you while you are walking on the sidewalk.
    Good point. My fondest memory of Taipei was when I was young (Under 10) and opening a taxi door ON THE sidewalk side. A guy on a motorcycle almost took out my arm as he smashed (A little strong) into the door. .... there were a lot less motorcycles in Taipei then. (Read the 1961-2005 thread)

    I was last there in late 2002 (My dad has a condo in Taipei) and noticed the sense of order had improved quite alot. They have the painted squares where all the motorcycles gather in front. How pleasant.

    I didn't know that about the 250cc size in Taipei. Is this just for new purchases, or for all motorcycles period? Only Taipei city limits presumably?

    Not sure about the size limit in Indonesia. There is so much corruption in Indonesia I don't think it would matter anyway what the law book says. This guy almost took me out in Jakarta:



    I hope he fell/falls into one of the many craters randomly located in Jakarta:


    In the capital there seemed to be more cars than motos overall though.


    In less prosperous cities like Yogyakarta (Jogja) motorcycles dominated. They were everywhere. Thank you Honda and friends.



    Recent Moto Adventures

    I recently mustered up the courage to rent a motorcycle in various spots recently while in SE Asia. Prior, I had only done it in nearly traffic-less Northern Thailand. (I have taken a Motorcycle Safety Course in California before though and got/had a license endorsement) I rented a 125-150CC on a South Thailand island - enjoyable. Also a similar sized engine in Penang, Malaysia which was my first experience riding in heavy traffic. Interesting experience. Girlfriend was on back too...so had to be extra cautious.

    I saw larger 500CC sportbikes and Harley-style for rent (US$10!!)
    in Ao Nang, Thailand.

    More photos:

    Sanur on Island of Bali, Indonesia


    Back in Jakarta


    I guess if it is a dog-eat-dog atmosphere - I guess it is reflected in how they treat
    wildlife. Following taken at one of the many bird markets in the country - this one in Jakarta too.







    While at first glance these birds have nothing to do with Cyburbia..I guess my take is one thing leads to another. Life in a poorly planned big city can be frustrating..so people just take it out on someone/thing else that they can control.

    Funny how Jakarta and Singapore are so close yet are like completely different worlds. Overpopulation, cheap oil and major corruption I think are the biggest causes of Indonesia's poor planning.

    It ain't all ruined though....back on Bali.
    Last edited by NHPlanner; 15 May 2005 at 7:38 PM.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian ICT/316's avatar
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    Beijing's traffic is so bad, they execute transportation official's! Read here in the
    LA Times
    In Beijing, All Roads Lead to Gridlock
    By Sam Crane, Sam Crane teaches Chinese politics and philosophy at Williams College and is the author of "Aidan's Way."


    http://www.latimes.com/news/printedi...ck=2&cset=true

  7. #7
    Cyburbian plankton's avatar
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    All I know is that after looking at those great pictures of Bangkok, traffic here just got a whole lot better. Holy sh!t. That dog picture is hilarious.

    My extra $.02 (and completely IMHO with much bias and not a ton of substance):
    Worst traffic in the U.S. resides in Hotlanta. So much potential, so little forethought. Oh well, exurbia, here we come........

  8. #8
    Why do people still move to cities with traffic problems? I never hear anyone say "I'm not moving to that city because it has Bad Traffic". Yet, other quality of life issues are factors.

    When will people say enough is enough and start moving to metros with less traffic, for instance Upstate NY metros?

  9. #9
    Cyburbian eightiesfan's avatar
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    Wow, some of those cities are a mess! To a lesser degree, some of the worst traffic I've seen was in NYC, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Madrid and Sevilla.
    Regrets, I've had a few; But then again, too many to mention.

  10. #10
    Member
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    Cairo, Egypt
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    You're asking for the world's worst traffic (including noise, pollution, etc.)? Then you need Cairo.

    Noise: CHECK
    Pollution: CHECK
    Traffic: CHECK

    I found a list of the worst traffic cities in the world: http://allworldcars.com/wordpress/?p=11866

    But I believe it is misleading, because it doesn't include CAIRO!

    This one is better, although they aren't in order: http://auto.howstuffworks.com/traffic5.htm

    Oh, I almost forgot: you need to come here and check out the drivers. There are many videos on YouTube showing traffic in Cairo, and the 'mass suicide' that people commit while trying to cross the streets like clowns in a circus. I live in Cairo, so I know.

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